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IPS Quality of service gone downhill


Ozpicious
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Being a long time user of IPS software over the past couple of years I have become increasingly dissapointed with it and the service from some IPS staff. Not much point trying to give constructive feedback anymore or mentioning bugs and/or overlooked features as the topics are simply closed or removed when it all gets too much I guess for some of the IPS staff on board now days.

Imo IPS has gone too big and forgotten its original motto of loyal customers over numbers. Also where is the IP.Chat on the 4.0 preview site??

I Apologise for my frustration but it is just coming down the line as our community members are increasingly dissapointed with IPS software and IP.Chat in particular with its failure to support SSL, which is just absurd in this day and age but apparently cannot be fixed with any patch update and going on over a year later now we SSL folk are still waiting for a truely secure chat service.

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  • Management

I'm sorry for your frustration. It's difficult to address your concerns without specific examples and the last ticket on your account was months ago, so I'm unsure what has gone downhill exactly, but I'm happy to go over any concerns with you and see if there's anything we can do.

If the crux of your concerns revolve around chat and SSL - it is coming in the next version, not to worry. Chat is not ready for the preview site yet, but it shouldn't be too long. Thanks for your patience and again, feel free to reach out with specific concerns.

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No to hijack your thread, Oz, but I have to say I am very pleased with the service I have received from IPS staff. I certainly haven't seen it degrade.

Granted, I don't use IP.Chat - nor will I ever. (Nothing against their chat. I just figure if people want to chat, they can go elsewhere. I run an online forum. They can post there if they have something to say.) But, concerning any issues I have had come up, IPS staff has been on the ball. I'm glad to be able to help support the team, even though I am only a two license holder.

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While my level frustration isn't as high as Oz's, I can sympathize with the frustration he feels. Since IPS 3.0.0 was released, IPS has continued to remove key features of the IPS software simply because other clients they have want the software to have a more social media feel. Since IPB 2.3.6, the software has added more of what I would call 'bloatware', which is a common problem for manufacturers of desktops and laptops who load their product with crap that really isn't needed. Now, I'm not saying that IPS is going in the wrong direction, but many of the features that were removed are features that many licensed IPS clients have expressed dismay over and want to see those features return.

When everything these days is tied into facebook and twitter, many of us feel that the IPS platform is spending too much time trying to be like facebook and twitter. Now, I've been with IPS since 2005 and I've stuck with the software platform, even though many of those features have been removed. But, the IPS software is slowly moving away from the forum software and at some point, the 'forum software' aspect of the suite will eventually be removed.

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Can you clarify what "key features" have been removed between 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, and 3.4?

Obviously it concerns us when people make such sweeping statements. As Lindy pointed out, Ozpicious posted about service quality yet has not submitted any tickets to our staff in months so we cannot determine what he is referring to. I would be curious to know what you are referring to as well.

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Well, certain features like profile comments, the whole username / display name feature, avatar selection from within a user's profile (hint, IPS still includes the default animation avatar images in its forum software but has removed the avatar selector from the profile editor features). I can't name them all off the top of my head but I recall that the only reasoning for removing those features is that "IPS has clients that it requesated those features be removed". I think if IPS has clients that requested this, it's funny how some of us have never heard of anyone requesting the removal of these features. I thought it might have been requested by IPS' corporate clients who wanted the software to have a more social media feel to it. Matter of fact, I specifically remember an IPS Staff member saying that they were asked to streamline the IPS software and give it a more social media feel' I don't remember where I read about it on the forums, maybe the preview site, but I do remember it being referred to after the preview site went live.

Then, there's the administration side of things that were changed around. Such as, turning the default dashboard into an advertising page for IPS news (this happened in 3.0). There are a lot of us who wanted the logged statistics of members returned to the dashboard. Some licensed clients know what I'm talking about, such as the number of members logged on, locked accounts, number of banned members and so on.

I can't begin to tell you that it's VERY inconvenients having to search through the IPS ACP trying to keep finding that blasted log page. If someone were to have their account locked, there's nothing to remind an admin from unlocking that account for that member unless that member has the email address of the admin. While I understand the reason for removing key features or re-arranging things, it's done nothing but upset some licensed users. Worse yet, one would think that IPS would ask for feedback from its licensed holders on what it could do to improve the software instead of making unilateral decisions to remove those features. I'm not saying to take into effect everyone's opinion, but if a certain feature is widely used by licensed users of the software, at least be willing to hear arguments for keeping those features in the software.

Charles, don't get me wrong, I've been satisfied with the IPS software and the members on my site are satified with it as well. It's why I've remained with IPS for nearly 10 years, as I'm a licensed user of IP.Board, IP.Content and IP.Gallery and have plans on adding IP.Blog, IP.Downloads and IP.Nexus at some point around my next license renewal this winter. I'm just pointing out some of the features that were removed that we're beneficial to my community.

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Charles, some of the features I've listed had been removed with the 3.0 series and I've been told that other features have also been removed from the 4.0 upgrade. But, you're right about the quality of service. I've never been disappointed in the level of service that IPS provides and I have nothing but good things to say about IPS Support Staff and their customer support. The oonly thing I've been personally disappointed in is some of the features that had been removed.

The Status Updates feel too much like twitter and it has inferior to the previous 'profile comments' system we had with IPB 2.3.x. The removal of the avatar selector from a user's profile editor was also disappointing but I didn't miss that as much as I have the profile comments feature. But, what was confusing was that IPS removed the avatar selector but didn't bother removing the default avatars that accompanied that old style avatar selector. Anyone who remembers IPB 2.3.x knows what I'm talking about.

Even though I've been disappointed at the removal of certain features, it's the inadequate excuse that I was given over the removal of the Username / Display Name feature. The whole 'security by obscurity' excuse never really flies with me. The reason being is that any hacker can cause you problems is they can see your username on your forums and deliberately lock you out of your account by wrongly guessing your password. After so many tries, you get locked out of your account by someone trying to disrupt your account on your own site. With a username that's separate from your displayname, it makes it harder for someone to do just that because your login ID (or username) is never publicly revealed. It just leaves your community open to more hackers, something which I experienced very recently when a hacker tried to scam my webhost into changing my website/server passwords. The attempt failed but it defines that the IPS software needs better security to prevent someone from gaining access to the IPB administrators accounts.

While I hope that IPS isn't removing that particular username / display name system from the final version, from what I've been led to believe, that the software is resorting to a single username for registered accounts. I'd love to upgrade to IPS4, but this has been the one nagging point for me and I have a lot of members on my site who have also expressed concerns over that.

Another thing I've discovered is that IPS4 bombards your email account with a lot of error messages. I had noticed that I was receiving a lot of error messages generated by 'guests'. But, while I disabled guest posting anything, I discovered that these error messages were being generated by search engines such as 'Google' and 'Bing'. When a search engine comes across a link that no longer exists, IPS4 generates an 'error message' which is sent to your email account, if you have one set up for your main admin account.

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Yeah the combining of avatars and profiles was a very backward step. I want an avatar in the forums and elsewhere but if anyone comes into my profile they can see a photo of my pretty face. I don't recall anything else that was removed bothering any of my members or me.

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... The reason being is that any hacker can cause you problems is they can see your username on your forums and deliberately lock you out of your account by wrongly guessing your password. After so many tries, you get locked out of your account by someone trying to disrupt your account on your own site. With a username that's separate from your displayname, it makes it harder for someone to do just that because your login ID (or username) is never publicly revealed. It just leaves your community open to more hackers, something which I experienced very recently when a hacker tried to scam my webhost into changing my website/server passwords. The attempt failed but it defines that the IPS software needs better security to prevent someone from gaining access to the IPB administrators accounts....

Just to ensure the information in this thread is accurate - this is not true. The account lockout is IP-address based, so the only way a "hacker" could lock you out of your account is if they are attempting to brute force your admin account from the same IP address you are visiting from. The lockout is IP-address-based for the very reason you describe.

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I used IPB since they're FREE until now, so i can say its all about Money!

Support at forum is not official, just users supporting another users, sometime no-one reply you.

Wanna good support? Wanna IPB dev support u? PAY for it! They're really good at pay support, quick and helpful!

IMO For what you get for your money its very good value indeed. :)

Regarding peer-to-peer forum support, you have to bear in mind for this you're relying on both someone reading it to know the answer and want to answer, naturally for official support you need so submit a ticket

Some of the topics in peer-to-peer also relate to changes or items that are not part of the core software either, ie custom design changes or modification of existing functions.

As a random sidenote I do try to answer most of the support related topics I read on the forum that I can...

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